Madewell Chambray top
Eileen Fisher harem pants
Antik Batik necklace
Play CdG X converse sneakers | use code GRECHEN25 at Azalea for 25% off your first order
Balenciaga city bag | secondhand from MOSS designer consignment
It’s pretty much the nastiest day ever here today – just when you think it’s going to stop raining, a downpour comes. So, I really wanted to wear my No6 Clogs I’ve just pulled back out again, but instead I’m wearing my Play CdG sneakers. Sue me for wearing sneakers with my harem pants. Just as an aside, it’s AMAZING how much vitriol & judgement there is online with regard to harem pants! I know the style isn’t for everyone, and sure, maybe you think they’re unflattering, but they’re JUST PANTS. And the idea that you can NEVER wear harem pants with anything but heels is mentioned a lot, and/or don’t pair them with anything slouchy.
I decided long ago that I’m not here to tell anyone how to dress; sometimes I can barely dress myself! I do try to get women to TRY NEW THINGS and silhouettes that they may not have before – lead by example I always say. Hell, I’ve said many times I wouldn’t wear this or that and then turned around and done it – all because I tried. Ultimately, I don’t care anymore what’s the most flattering, I care more about wearing what I love, what I find interesting, what feels good, and what tells a story.
Harem pants definitely tell a story 🙂 I think they say you’re creative, interesting, not afraid to shake things up sometimes, or try something new – and you definitely want to be noticed, not blend in. Because when you wear these, you get looks. Which I love, because someone out there is saying, wow, those are cool, she looks cute, maybe I should try them! Sure, someone else out there is saying, damn, those are fugly pants and she looks ridiculous, but I can’t care about that one.
So here’s my question for the day: what item of clothing (or bag, or shoes) do you own and wear that tells a story? Maybe it’s controversial? Maybe you’re THE ONLY person who likes it? But what does it say about you?
Heels here would be juvenile, unless you’re at NYFW and everything else is produced with a high gloss. I, before I read your words, thought, “KILLER!”
I still do.
I’m not much of a one for controversial clothes, my gray hair is all I can handle;).
You hit it right on the head for me when you said, ” Ultimately, I don’t care anymore what’s the most flattering, I care more about wearing what I love, what I find interesting, what feels good, and what tells a story.” I dress for myself, which means that some days, I wear my favorite pj’s around the house all day if I don’t have to go out. And when I do, I sometimes throw on shorts with my unshaven legs (Who can see it? And do I care?) When I go out, shopping, to lunch, to a movie, I dress stylishly for me and wear something that really, I’m most comfortable in. I think my jewelry tells a story for me more than my clothes do sometimes. I have won some really beautiful pieces that get comments. I think the only thing I’ve purchase recently that’s controversial is my skinny camo jeans that my husband and daughter hate! Ha ha ha…and I will wear them HAPPILY!
[email protected] says
Hear, hear! I’m a recently new reader of your blog and I decided to start following it for a couple reasons, partly because I’m almost 40 and I don’t really find the average 22 year old fashion blogger very inspiring, and partly because this seems like a blog about what you actually wear in real life vs. outfits carefully curated to make you look cool for a personal photo shoot. I think harem pants can look fantastic or terrible, it kind of depends on the mix and the confidence of the wearer. I’ve never worn harem pants, but the last few years I’ve been a big fan of the swing sweater style, with tight arms and volume through the body. It’s a terrible style for my body type, which looks way better when I show that I have a waist, but its comfortable, and I think the silhouette is chic.
Grechen Reiter says
i LOVE swing tops/sweaters, but they do nothing for my body either – i think that’s another thing we have to balance in our wardrobes: what we love (and love to wear) with what looks “traditionally” flattering on our bodies. sometimes i don’t balance that at all, and just wear a slouchy top with slouchy bottoms – to hell with flattering – but i do like to look nice for my husband sometimes too 🙂
Grechen Reiter says
totally agree about jewelry – the few standout pieces that i have really make the outfit; i can wear one of my necklaces, and feel “complete” even in a t-shirt & jeans.
um. i want a pair of skinny camo jeans. maybe not camo, but at least military color! with cargo pockets. my husband would kill me 😉
I have a pair of those, too, that I bought years ago at J Crew. They’re still in perfect condition because I rarely wear them. But when I do, I always think, “Why haven’t I been using these in my outfits?” because they fit so well and flatter. So, as my husband says, “I don’t have to like everything you wear, do I?” Or I should say, asks. (My fashion sense just overwhelms him! 😉 )
Boy, do I hear you, [email protected]!! That’s one of the things I (we) love about Grechen…her “realness.” I say, “Wear what you love and make it work for YOU!” (I’m also a swing-lover….Let me be clear: Tops and sweaters….and they don’t always flatter my body, either. But I love the look!)
I agree with [email protected], in terms of age, inspiration and all else. I’m not sure of what story my clothes tell — I live in the Northeast and have generally always gravitated to being covered. Fall’s my favorite season and I love sweater weather and an overall underdone look (the usual suspects – Charlotte Gainsbourg even more than Sofia Coppola. But I don’t get close enough to that look, really.) I love the look of fitted, cropped pants, flats, sweaters, little makeup – something tomboyish or gamine — over heels and pants that graze the floor, or full-on glamor, and I’m guessing my preferences are the less flattering option!
I finally got to try these harem pants on today…surprised even myself at how much I loved them!!!
You posted this blog entry on my 56th birthday, so I’ve left the 40’s well behind me.
I know that the first time I wear them my husband will give me a “look” , but won’t say a word LOL…
Thanks for all of the great photos of you wearing these pants in so many different ways.
Grechen Reiter says
i’m glad you got to try them finally! i expected to like them when I tried them on too, but i didn’t expect to love them nearly as much.
the only thing i would say about them is if you like the length that they are now, don’t wash them – i’d recommend dry cleaning them. i washed mine in cold water (didn’t dry) and the length shrunk up a bit. it’s still okay, but i did like them better when they were a bit longer. now i just wear them a little lower on my hips!
That’s good to know Gretchen. I’m 5’8″ and sized up like you did for length.